Cotati-Rohnert Park Unified School District Superintendent Mayra Perez announced her retirement Monday after leading her school district through COVID-19 and a six-day teachers’ strike.
Perez sent a message to parents and staff through the ParentSquare communication portal that he plans to retire on October 31 after decades of training.
Originally scheduled to serve a three-year term through June 2023, the school board recently extended her contract through 2025.
The Cotati-Rohnert Park Unified School District, the third largest in Sonoma County, enrolled 6,449 students this year, according to the California Department of Education.
Perez began the role in July 2020 during the pandemic to help transition to virtual learning.
She has also successfully adopted new English and math curricula, established a virtual learning academy to support vulnerable students, said Board Chair Michelle Wing in a message to the district’s community.
“Dr. Perez has guided our district through unprecedented challenges while always putting student success and achievement at the forefront,” Wing said.
However, Perez’s tenure was not without controversy. In March 2022, more than 300 teachers went on his six-day strike over wage disputes. In June 2022, the Rohnert Park Cotati Educators Association notified the school board that over 92% of his teachers supported a vote of no confidence against Perez. They cited a lack of engagement with parents and faculty, and a lack of planning to address staff shortages in key areas such as special education.
The board also announced in a closed session on Tuesday that it had launched a search to fill her position, giving Perez and the new leader time to transition.
“With the end of the school year approaching, I’ve decided it’s time to start a new chapter in my life: retirement,” Perez said in a message for ParentSquare. “We wish our school every success and look forward to learning about the successes you will achieve in the future.”
Staff Writer Alana Minkler can be reached at 707-526-8531 or firstname.lastname@example.org. on Twitter @alana_minkler.